With his base in wealthy Fairfield County in the state of Connecticut, Rep. Jim Himes is a top campaign fundraiser, but the Democrat has a new Republican challenger who says he plans to rival the incumbent in raising political money. With his announcement, Harry Arora, 48, an Indian American investment firm founder is looking to make waves in public service, running for Congress in Connecticut’s 4th Congressional District.
Arora of Greenwich, Conn., filed his paperwork to run for the seat in late December, seeking the Republican Party nomination. With no other opponent filing for the race, he will bypass the Aug. 14 primary and head directly to the Nov. 6 general against Democratic incumbent Rep. Jim Himes.
The candidate, who fought and survived cancer, has also helped with other campaigns in the past. It was his battle with cancer that led him to shift his focus from business to public service, Arora said. With his background in investing, and as an analyst and investment manager, he believes he is well suited to utilize his skill set in public office.
“Connecticut has never recovered fully from the great recession. Businesses and talent are fleeing the state because of the hostile policy environment – we are in a vicious cycle and our elected officials are oblivious to it,” he said.
“I am running for the U.S. Congress to propose and advocate policies which will help my state get back on track. I want to bring back honest discussion in our national debate,” the candidate added.
A release from Arora’s campaign said, “Like Himes, Arora is also from the investment industry and has the ability to raise money to match Himes.”
“He is the first investment manager in Fairfield County to run for Congress, which gives him access to capable donors,” the release said. “It is the combination of intellect, passion and genuine desire to serve, which people see and feel when they meet me. That is what is going to win this race for me,” he asserted to India-West.
Arora, if elected, would likely join a growing group of Indian American members of Congress — Ro Khanna and Ami Bera of California, Pramila Jayapal of Washington and Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois — but would be the first hailing from the East Coast.
“A large number of Indian Americans are first generation and have become American citizens in recent years. They have been busy in their personal fights – to raise their families, to do well at their jobs, build businesses and careers. Indian Americans are highly educated, hardworking and entrepreneurial,” he said.
“I am glad to see that so many other Indians are running for office. It is not easy. Perhaps the time has come. Indian Americans are well represented in banking, legal, technology and so many other professions. It is now time they step up to the challenge of public office.”
The candidate added that if 2 percent of the country is of Indian ethnicity, the government should have nine Indian origin representatives and two senators. By those standards, the community is halfway there, with four representatives in the House and one — Kamala Harris of California — in the Senate.